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Bullet Hole comes to Park Theatre for Black History Month

Photography – Naiad Photography

Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

FREEDOM Tongues and Naiad Productions in association with Park Theatre are presenting Bullet Hole at Park Theatre (Park90). Written by Gloria Williams, it runs from October 2 to October 27, 2018, during Black History Month.

So I finally got my gift. Gifts are meant to be opened, right?

Bullet Hole explores the relationship between three Black, British born women who are survivors of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM). The piece explores the physical, mental and emotional effects this practice causes and shines a light on the institutions in Britain that can offer support. At its heart, Bullet Hole is a story of hope, love and human rights, played by an all-female cast.

Bullet Hole first premiered at the 2017 Camden Fringe Festival and later was nominated for the Alfred Fagon Audience Choice Award. Freedom Tongues and Naiad Productions are delighted to be working with Park Theatre to present this re-worked version of the script.

The play is directed by Lara Genovese (founder of Naiad Productions) and stars Gloria Williams (who also wrote the play), Doreene Blackstock and Anni Domingo.

What’s in a gift? Young Londoner Cleo was given her ‘gift’ at age seven – except that ‘gift’ left her with type 3 Female Genital Mutilation.

How can Cleo love her body, when she is further scarred by a brutal sexual assault at the hands of her husband? From this hideous act, Cleo resolves to go against her family’s wishes and seek reversal surgery. On her journey of healing, she meets Eve, a fellow FGM survivor who is instantly drawn to her…

Playwright and actress Gloria Williams said: “I have always been passionate about exposing the issues affecting the black community. My first play Monday explored child abuse in a Black British religious family.

“I developed Bullet Hole as I believed writing a play about Female Genital Mutilation was a good platform to condemn an old tradition which oppresses women. This brutal practice is still present in our current time, worldwide spread and is not spoken about enough. I hope that the production serves to raise awareness, using drama as a tool to educate audiences.

“Black History Month is a time to shine a light on issues within the diaspora. However, Bullet Hole is not just a celebration of Black arts, but a wake-up call for everyone to acknowledge society’s acts against human/women/children rights”.

Gloria Williams is an alumni of the Royal Court Young Writers Group and Talawa Theatre Company Young Writers Group. She is also an accomplished actress and will be playing the role of Cleo. Theatre credits include: Mules (White Bear Theatre), Medea (The Rose Theatre), Monday – which she also wrote (Manhattan Repertory Theatre, Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Samuel French Off Broadway Festival, Lost One Act Play Festival: Winner of ‘Best Overall Production’), Elefant (Soho Theatre; Playwrights apprenticeship), No More the Wasted Breed (Collective Artists), and You Me BUM BUM Train (Oxford Samuel Beckett Theatre Trust prize).

Doreene Blackstock, who plays Eve, will also appear at Park Theatre this season in Distance. Her theatre credits include: Much Ado About Nothing (The Globe), Roundelay (Southwark Playhouse), Cymbeline, Hamlet, Noughts & Crosses (RSC), Antigone, Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner (Pilot Theatre Company), Holloway Jones (Synergy Theatre Project), The Container (Young Vic) and Leonora’s Dance (Black Theatre Co-operative).

Completing the cast is Anni Domingo, who is from Sierra Leone, Freetown, where the play is set. She plays the role of Winnie. Her theatre credits include Gone With The Wind (Drury Lane), Blood Wedding (National Theatre), The Crucible (Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre), Yerma and The Children’s Hour (both Manchester Royal Exchange), Tartuffe and Suddenly Last Summer (both Theatre Clywd Mold) and No Boys Cricket Club (Theatre Royal, Stratford East).

Naiad Productions will also be hosting an ANTI FMG portrait exhibition (September to November) in Park Theatre’s foyer, which will include pictures of survivors, activists, volunteers and industry members who support the cause. Additionally, there will be two performances followed by Q&A sessions with Charity and NHS lead representatives (October 10 and 18).

Bullet Hole is designed by Lara Genovese, with lighting by Rajiv Pattani, sound by Ed Clarke and photography by Naiad Photography.

Tickets: Previews £14.50, Standard £18, Concessions £16.50, Young Patrons (October 2 to October 9) £10, Groups – buy 10 tickets, get the 11th free. Yo book, call the box office on 020 7870 6876 or visit www.parktheatre.co.uk/.

Times: Monday to Saturday evenings at 7.45pm; Thursday and Saturday matinees at 3.15pm.

Captioned performance: Friday, October 26 at 7.45pm.